A gigantic, greasy feast for the eyes

“Epic Meal Time” entertains millions one massive meal at a time.

by Leah Lancaster

What could possibly encapsulate American culture better then a 50-pound, 138,226-calorie bacon cheeseburger pumped full of Jack DanielâÄôs BBQ sauce? Not much, but a 12-story grilled cheese tower deep-fried in beer batter does a fine job as well.

Both of these creations are the handiwork of Harley Morenstein, host of the viral Internet video series âÄúEpic Meal Time.âÄù Every Tuesday, audiences watch with a mixture of shock, adoration and disgust as each burly cast member gorges himself on troughs of Four Loko Chili (46,255 calories) and handfuls of Lamb Heart Boar Bacon Cake (25,217 calories). The success of âÄúEpic Meal TimeâÄù has allowed Morenstein to quit his job as a substitute teacher so he can eat bacon and drink Jack DanielâÄôs full time. HeâÄôs currently living the American dream âĦ only heâÄôs from Canada. Ironically, the show has a distinctively American flavor despite its red-and-white roots.

In a country that prides itself on being the biggest and the best, âÄúEpic Meal TimeâÄù exposes and mocks the vices of American culture, but also makes sure not to take itself too seriously. Morenstein offers a sobering reflection on the excessiveness and gluttony plaguing modern society âÄî and gives a big middle finger to the health advocacy and weight loss industries at a time when over 190 million Americans are overweight or obese.

Even the comic personalities of the cast cannot cover up the bold, in-your-face style of the show. Morenstein has said, âÄúViewers are eating vicariously through us and they get to enjoy that through us.âÄù

Indeed, we enjoy it very much. There is something decidedly satisfying about watching a carnivorous young man chow down on a model car made out of meat and mashed potatoes. Is it vulgar? Yes. But is it entertaining? Absolutely. In its own greasy way, âÄúEpic Meal TimeâÄù parodies âÄî but also celebrates âÄî the excesses of American culture.